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Bail Bondsman's Guide to Hiring High-Quality Employees

Bail agents need to be extremely selective when hiring new employees. It is no mystery that the right employee can have an amazing impact on the success of your bail agency. Because your fellow bail agents and office staff are the heart and soul of your company, it is vital that you hire those who will help grow your business, who will work hard, help increase business and revenue, and be motivated to keep your company running smoothly and effectively. Because the person you hire will be interacting with your customers and serving as one of the faces of your company, it is highly important that you choose someone with the right combination of experience and people skills.

When hiring a new employee in the bail industry - whether you're scouting new bail agents or administrative employees - you should look for:

  • Great customer service skills
  • Someone who is a hard worker and dedicated
  • Professionalism
  • Someone who is willing and able to work long hours, weekends and holidays
  • Someone with basic computer and organizational skills
  • A team player

Attracting quality bail agents and administrative employees

Although it may be a tedious process, effectively hiring quality employees begins before you ever meet a candidate. The best place to start is using your own personal and professional networks. Pay attention to the people you come into contact with in your daily life. Ask acquaintances, friends, colleagues, and current employees if they can recommend anyone suitable for the position.

Another easy and cheap way to recruit a qualified employee is to post an ad online. With sites such as Craigslist, CareerBuilder and local newspaper websites, it is often free and easy to post an ad and job description, and by utilizing these job boards, employees come to you. Benefits of using online job boards include being able to post not only locally but also regionally, it's simple for you and job seekers to use, it's cost effective and you will get a good mix of applicants to choose from.

In order to attract the right candidates on job boards, you must create an effective job ad. Key things to include in your ad are a list of skills you are looking for in the potential candidate, the different roles that will need to be filled, the necessary education and experience levels of the applicants and the personality traits that are important to the position and the company. By being specific to your business needs in your ad you will narrow down the candidates and discourage many unqualified people from applying for the position.

Interviewing selected applicants

The interview is your chance to dig below the surface to learn about their motivation to work for you, their work ethic, their strengths, and their weaknesses, how they will fit into the work culture at your business, etc. To underscore the financial importance of hiring the right person, consider this statistic: Depending on which source you quote, hiring the wrong employee could cost your company anywhere from two to 10 times the employee's annual salary. Those numbers make high turnover rates much less acceptable from a business standpoint.

When conducting the interview, consider these helpful tips:

  • Take your time. Hiring new employees is no quick and easy task, so taking your time during the process instead of rushing into a decision will pay off in the long run. Before beginning the interview process, make a list of the qualities and experience you're looking for so that you have a crystal-clear picture of your ideal employee. Don't settle.
  • Give a realistic job description. When describing your company to the applicant, be sure to give them an accurate representation of what day-to-day life will be like at work. Information that they should be given includes working hours, workload, specific duties and an overview of what it's like to work for your company. You want the person you choose to want to work for you and to know what to expect, which will help you avoid high turnover rates.
  • Test the applicants. You want someone who is thorough and can follow directions, so giving them certain small tasks of your choosing throughout the interview process can help you quickly figure out who has these qualities.
  • Mix up your questions. In addition to standard interview questions, ask the person about how they have handled specific situations, and how they would handle hypothetical situations. This will give you a clearer idea of their ethics and decision-making skills.
  • Create the right interviewing environment. The more relaxed the applicant is during the interview, the better idea you will get about the person's true personality and qualifications. Take measures to put him or her at ease such as not placing their chair directly in front of you, and using a more welcoming demeanor during the interview.

Once you've completed the interview process and chosen one or more prospective employees, read the second part of this series, where we'll focus on how to screen applicants to find the right one.

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If you would like to redistribute this article or any other content for your website, newsletter or other publication, e-mail [email protected] to find out how. And if you're interested in writing articles about the bail industry, is always looking for guest writers to share their industry knowledge.

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